The Bush Theatre announce further shows in Lynette Linton’s first season as Artistic Director

  • The local community appear at the core of The Living Room and  Our Place, Our Time
  • Level Up introduces new talent discovered by the Bush Theatre appearing alongside award-winning actor Malachi Kirby
  • The world premiere of award-winning writer Ella Road’s Fair Play
  • Graeae and Tamasha Theatre join the Bush in presenting the world premiere of Shahid Khan’s 10 Nights
  • The Queer House presents an extended version of the Edinburgh Fringe hit Pink Lemonade

(art direction by Doug Kerr)

Lynette Linton and the Bush Theatre follow the success of ChiaroscuroBaby Reindeer (which transfers to the West End and NYC this year) and critically acclaimed productions The Arrival, I Wanna Be Yours, Collapsible and The High Table by announcing further shows to complete Lynette’s first season.

Putting the community front and centre of the programming, the venue announces two new works – The Living Room and Our Place, Our Time – which have been made in collaboration with local organisations, along with further details of Level Up, a ground-breaking production written by award-winning actor Malachi Kirby in which he appears alongside an ensemble of new young actors found from across London through a series of workshops run by Lynette Linton and Daniel Bailey.

Other highlights include the world premiere of Fair Play by Ella Road; 10 Nights, a co-production with Graeae and Tamasha, and the return of The Queer House to the Bush with an extended version of the critically acclaimed Edinburgh Fringe hit Pink Lemonade.

Shahid Khan and Ella Road join Temi Wilkey and Zia Ahmed as writers in this season who have been discovered and supported by the Bush’s talent development initiatives. Ella Road was part of the Bush Theatre’s 2018 Emerging Writers’ Group and was commissioned in full at the end of the programme. Shahid was on Graeae’s 2018 Write to Play Programme, which the Bush Theatre partnered on, and wrote part of 10 Nights in the Bush Theatre’s on-site Writers Room.

Lynette Linton said:

‘Breaking down the barriers between ‘professional’ work and community work is why I wanted to run a building, so I’m proud to announce two new works created in partnership with our local community, as well as bringing Level Up, a collaboration between Malachi Kirby and new London talent, to the stage.

The continuation of my first season also highlights how integral nurturing new writers is to the Bush, as we announce plays by two more writers who have been supported by our talent development programs. 

I’m also proud to continue and grow successful creative partnerships with The Queer House, Graeae and Tamasha – companies that are continually pushing the boundaries of new writing, as well as with local organisations, the Baron’s Court Project and Masbro Tea Centre Club.’

Made with The Masbro Tea Centre Club

OUR PLACE, OUR TIME

Lead Artist – Will Hudson

Musical Director – Alex Etchart

Movement Director – Corinne Meredith

Lighting Designer – Devon Muller

Videographer – Michael Lynch

Stage Manager – Dylan Tate

Masbro Centre Lead – Tina Wood

28 March

Home. A word that everyone recognises and, more importantly, feels. But what does home really mean? Is it a house? A country? Is your true home hiding somewhere in the past or can you find it in the here and now?

Over the past few months, the Masbro elders have been talking, singing and writing about what home means to them.

Part dance-theatre, part musical, part festival, Our Place, Our Time invites the audience to celebrate the wild complexity that the word home brings in turbulent 2020. Moving and hilarious, the piece places the Masbro group as leaders, co-creators and activists in their community.

This is their place and their time. This is their home.

Will Hudson is a theatre-maker and facilitator based in London, who has been working for over 15 years in the fields of participatory arts and ensemble theatre, both in the UK and abroad. His work is strongly informed by European and contemporary actor training and through international collaborations with Declan Donnellan of Cheek By Jowl, Anne Bogart of SITI Company New York, the National Theatre of Spain and Jeremy James of Theatre du Soleil. In a participatory context, Will’s focus is on nurturing people’s creativity and confidence through devising original works of artistic excellence. In London, he has partnered with a wide range of theatres and organisations including The Bush, The Old Vic, Kiln Theatre, BAC, Queen’s Theatre Hornchurch, Outside Edge Theatre, Turning Point, Paddington Development Trust, Working With Men, amongst many others.

Corinne Meredith is a Community Dance and Theatre Artist working in a variety of community settings. Her dance work includes work at the Place and DanceWest and she is Creative Support Artist for the National Youth Dance Company. She has previously worked at Trinity Laban, the Royal Academy of Dance and has led projects for NYDC and Company of Elders at Sadler’s Wells. Corinne runs Neighbourhood Play at the Young Vic and was a Project Associate and Dance Captain for Public Acts at the National Theatre from 2017-2019. Prior to becoming freelance, Corinne was a youth theatre leader/director and Participation Projects Manager at the Orange Tree Theatre.

Over the past 15 years, Tina Wood has worked creatively with older people in a variety of settings including The Peabody Trust and AgeUK Lambeth. In 2010 she set up The Purple Hat Company, a not-for-profit organisation, to encourage and promote the arts and older people, running a week-long, multimedia arts event as part of Wandsworth Arts Festival which highlighted and celebrated the work of older artists. Her work with the Masbro Elders Project continues to focus on partnership building with the aim of opening doors to a wealth of cultural and learning opportunities for older people.

Made with the Women’s Group at Barons Court Project

The Living Room

3 – 8 April

Lead Artist Katie Duncan

Designed by Becky-Dee Trevenen

The Living Room is an immersive, sensory installation exploring the central role of the domestic living room in our lives and the imaginative possibilities of these familiar spaces. Facilitator Katie Duncan worked with the participants at Barons Court Women’s Project over nine months, supporting them to embark on a creative journey that culminates in this centrepiece installation. Many of the objects on display have been created by women in the group and encourage visitors to be playful and curious, engaging with all the possible living worlds contained within the space.

Katie Duncan is a scriptwriter, creative arts facilitator, and musician from South London. She has extensive experience of developing and delivering creative and participatory arts workshops within an array of community, educational and arts settings including The Albany, Bush Theatre, The Old Vic, Roundhouse and Wigmore Hall – and at festivals including Glastonbury, Shambala, and Wilderness, where she has also performed as a musician. Katie regularly collaborates on projects with the theatre company Tangled Feet, and as a writer, she is a graduate of both the Young Writers Programme at the Royal Court and the Writers’ Lab at the Arcola. Her writing is concerned with integrating the personal and the political, exploring the social issues that underpin the drama of our everyday lives, and she has had work staged at various places including Rich Mix, Tara Arts, and Edinburgh Festival. Earlier this year her play The Dame was staged at the Park Theatre, and a screenplay she has co-written entitled Bare is currently in pre-production with Raindog Films.

The Bush Theatre presents

Level Up

Written and performed by Malachi Kirby

Directed by Lynette Linton and Daniel Bailey

Set and Costume Design by Frankie Bradshaw

Lighting Design by Jessica Hung Han Yun

Sound Design and Composition by Francis Botu

Movement Direction by Annie-Lunette Deakin-Foster

Cast includes Maymuna Abdi, Malik Dapaah, Kane Feagan, Jonny Khan, Tia Scarlett

1 May – 6 June

Press night – 7 May

Post-Show Q&A – 12 May

Captioned Performance – 14 May at 7.30 pm

Audio Described Performance – 30 May at 2.30 pm

If you had the chance to re-play your life, what would you do differently?

When Ezra was at school, teachers would always talk about the future. What future? All he could see was the choice right in front of him. Play by the rules or pay the bills? Get moved to or make the first move? In Ezra’s world, life was a game and he was playing for survival.

But now Ezra’s got the chance to re-play the game of his life, and this time, he’s going to win.

Having won plaudits for his leading roles in Roots and Black Mirror, Malachi Kirby stars alongside an ensemble of new young actors in his exhilarating and visually stunning debut play that explores growing up in London.

Frankie Bradshaw is an award-winning set and costume designer for theatre and performance. She won the Best Creative West End Debut at the Stage Debut Awards 2019 jointly with director Lynette Linton for Sweat at the Gielgud Theatre. She was a Jerwood Young Designer in 2017, she won the Off West-End Best Set Design award in 2016, and was a Linbury Prize finalist in 2015.  Frankie’s recent design credits for theatre include: Sweat (West End/Donmar Warehouse), Two Trains Running (Royal & Derngate/UK Tour), Cinderella (Lyric Hammersmith), A Christmas Carol (Theatre Clwyd), Napoli Brooklyn (UK Tour/Park Theatre), Skellig (Nottingham Playhouse), Trying It On (UK Tour/RSC/Royal Court), Kiss Me Kate, Jerusalem, Nesting, Robin Hood (Watermill Theatre), Cookies (Theatre Royal Haymarket), On The Exhale (Traverse), Hansel (Salisbury Playhouse). For opera, she has designed: Macbeth, Idomeneo, and Elizabetta for English Touring Opera.

Annie-Lunnette Deakin-Foster is a passionate contemporary dance theatre choreographer, maker and movement director, and was a founding member of award-winning company, C-12 Dance Theatre. Her recent theatre credits include The Bee in Me by Ronald Schimmelpfennig dir. by Rachel Bagshaw; You Stupid Darkness by Sam Steiner dir. James Grieve at Southwark Playhouse; The Last Noel by Chris Bush dir. by Jonathan Humphries; Pavilion by Emily White dir. by Tamara Harvey at Theatr Clwyd; Chiaroscuro by Jackie Kay dir. by Lynette Linton at The Bush; On The Other Hand We’re Happy by Daf James, Daughterhood by Charley Miles and Dexter & Winters Detective Agency by Nathan Byron dir. by Stef O’Driscoll for ROUNDABOUT; Aesop’s Fables by Justin Audibert and Rachel Bagshaw at the Unicorn Theatre; Grimm Tales Phillip Pullman’s collection adapted by Philip Wilson dir. by Kirsty Housley at the Unicorn Theatre; Jericho’s Rose by Althea Theatre at The Hope & Anchor; POP MUSIC by Anna Jordan and dir. by James Grieve, Barry Jackson and national tour; The Court Must Have a Queen by Ade Solanke dir. by Sam Curtis Lindsay at Hampton Court Palace; These Bridges by Phoebe Éclair-Powell (WCYT as part of National Theatre Connections at The Bush); The Little Match Girl and Other Happier Tales by Joel Horwood and Emma Rice (2016-2017 Shakespeare’s Globe, presented by Bristol Old Vic 2017-2018 then toured nationally) and The Dark Room by Angela Betzien (Theatre503).

ON A LEVEL

Curated by Basheba Baptiste

Saturday 3 May, 12pm – 6pm

On a Level is an all-day event celebrating youth culture, city life, and gaming. Join local young artists to experiment with poetry, create your own map of London or join the quest to save the show. What are you waiting for? Get your free tickets before they’re snapped up. For 12 – 18 year olds.

I SPEAK THE CITY, Script Library, 12 pm

In huge cities like London, it’s easy to lose who you are amongst the noise and the chaos. Join artist Christy Ku, for a special workshop that explores how to find yourself and your voice through poetry writing and performance. If you’ve never written or performed before, don’t worry – this is aimed at complete beginners to help you gain confidence on and off the page.

MEMORY MAP YOUR CITY, Attic, 1 pm

What places did you walk past yesterday? Living in our city, being constantly on-the-go, how much do you actually remember? Artist Lizzie Reid will lead a unique illustration workshop where we’ll create memory-maps of our day, exploring the details of our hometowns and our relationship with time.

LEVEL UP: THE QUEST, Script Library, 5 pm

Older Ezra (played by Malachi Kirby) has got lost on a gaming level and needs to be found before the evening show starts. You and your team have an hour to follow the clues, crack the code, find Ezra and save the show. Will you take up the challenge?

You must have seen Level Up to take part in this quest.

Graeae and Tamasha in association with Bush Theatre present

10 Nights

by Shahid Iqbal Khan

Directed by Kash Arshad

28 May – 27 June

Press Night – 2 June at 7 pm

Post-Show Q&A – 23rd June

All performances of 10 Nights will be audio described and will creatively integrate captioning and British Sign Language (BSL)

One man’s spiritual journey is about to begin…after he’s sent this tweet

When Yasser decides to take part in itikaf, sleeping and fasting in the mosque for the last ten nights of Ramadan, he soon regrets his decision. But as he navigates smug worshippers, shared bathrooms, and recurring thoughts of chunky chips, Yasser’s isolation forces him to confront a side of himself he’s been trying to keep hidden.

A moving and funny new play by Shahid Iqbal Khan and directed by Kash Arshad, 10 Nights is the story of one man’s journey of self-discovery and facing the consequences of your actions.

Shahid Iqbal Khan’s initial foray into playwriting began with a 15-minute play for Carol Godby’s Festival of Plays (Bury, Lancashire).   Phizzical’s Associate Artist scheme allowed him to further explore the medium of playwriting. His first play for them, The Smile of Despair, performed for two nights at the Attenborough Arts Centre (Leicester) in 2015. The piece was later redrafted and retitled as Mr. And Mrs. Khan. It was a finalist in the Top 5 Play Readings Festival and was performed for one night at the Octagon Theatre (Bolton) in 2016.

His second play was a musical for Phizzical, Stardust, written in collaboration with Samir Bhamra, with lyrics by Robby Khela. It ran for one week at the Belgrade Theatre in Coventry in 2019. The story looked at gender and sexuality through the prism of the Bollywoodian reincarnation genre.

Shahid Iqbal Khan took part in Graeae Theatre’s Write to Play development programme in 2018. This year was about developing playwriting skills as well as liaising with programme partners Tamasha, Bush Theatre, Ovalhouse, Talawa and Soho Theatre. He makes his London debut with 10 Nights.

Kash Arshad was the Trainee Artistic Director at Freedom Studios in Bradford, and is now a freelance theatre director living in Halifax. Recent directing credits: Guards at the Taj (Theatre by the Lake) Black Teeth and a Brilliant Smile (Freedom Studios), Airplays (Leeds Playhouse), We Are Ninja Division (Slung Low Shorts), The Tempest (ALRA North), Selfies Kill More People Than Sharks (Rogue Bones),

Memories of Partition (Royal Exchange), Free Fall (Rogue Bones), The Big Reveal (Abooo Theatre) and Street Voices 7 (Freedom Studios). As Assistant Director: The Threepenny Opera (Octagon Bolton, dir. David Thacker), Handbagged (Theatre by The Lake, dir. Liz Stevenson), North Country (Freedom Studios for. Alex Chisholm), ChipShop The Musical (Freedom Studios/Octagon Bolton dir. Ben Occhipinti), Romeo and Juliet (West Yorkshire Playhouse, dir. Amy Leach).

Graeae is a force for change in world-class theatre – breaking down barriers, challenging preconceptions and boldly placing Deaf and disabled artists centre stage.

Artistically led by Jenny Sealey, Graeae’s signature characteristic is the compelling creative integration of sign language, captioning and audio description, which engages with both disabled and non-disabled audiences.  Championing accessibility and providing a platform for new generations of artists, Graeae leads the way in pioneering, trail-blazing theatre, both in the UK and internationally.

Graeae also run an extensive programme of training and learning opportunities throughout the year, developing the next generation of Deaf and disabled artists. These programmes include Write to Play for early-career writers, and Ensemble, which trains young Deaf and disabled artists in theatre making skills. Graeae are lucky enough to have a cohort of young artistic advisors, also known as The Rollettes, who come together to perform once a year.

Graeae are a National Portfolio Organisation (NPO) of Arts Council England and strategic partners of Ramps on the Moon. graeae.org / @graeae

Tamasha has a 30-year history of reaching new writing audiences and specialise in making new work for the stage inspired by the ever-changing cultures of contemporary Britain. They aim to spark distinctive social discourse through compelling theatre experiences that place the voices of emerging and established artists from culturally diverse backgrounds centre-stage.

Landmark productions include East Is East (1996), A Fine Balance (2006), Snookered (2012), My Name is… (2014), Blood (2015), Made In India (2017), Approaching Empty (2018), Does My Bomb Look Big In This? (2019), and I Wanna Be Yours (2019) winning acclaim from audiences and critics alike.

Alongside their national tours, Tamasha continues to nurture the next generation of theatre-makers through Tamasha Developing Artists (TDA); a national artist development programme with a track record of providing high-quality training and tangible professional opportunities for emerging and established theatre artists throughout their careers. They facilitate theatre-makers to engage with communities, young people and audiences through unique engagement, education projects, and creative collaborations.

tamasha.org.uk / @TamashaTheatre

The Bush Theatre presents

Fair Play

by Ella Road

12 June – 18 July

Press night – 17 June at 7 pm

Post-Show Q&A – 23 June

Captioned performance – 2 July at 7.30 pm

Audio Described performance – 11 July at 2.30 pm

The clocks are set. The line is drawn. They’ve got a chance to be champions. But at what cost? 

When Ann joins Sophie’s running club she’s thrown into a world of regimented training and pure focus. The two girls couldn’t be more different, but soon their shared passion makes them inseparable – dreaming in lanes and lap-times, waking up picturing Olympic medals, each day stronger and faster…

But set head to head in the run-up to the World Championships, they find themselves and their friendship put to the ultimate test. As their relationships, their bodies, and their very identities are pulled into public scrutiny, does being exceptional come at too high a price?

A gripping exploration of the underside of women’s athletics, Fair Play is the new work from Ella Road (The Phlebotomist) – “the most promising young playwright in Britain” (The Telegraph).

Ella Road is a writer and actor from London. Her debut play The Phlebotomist went on at the Hampstead Theatre Downstairs in 2018 before transferring to the Main Stage in 2019. It was nominated for an Olivier Award and was also a finalist for the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize. It was adapted into a radio drama for BBC R3. Ella is currently writing new commissions for the Almeida Theatre and Hampstead Theatre, and her play How to Eat An Elephant will premiere at Theatre Royal Plymouth this Autumn. She is also developing work for film and TV, including original series with Drama Republic for Channel 4, and Element Pictures for the BBC, and she recently wrote the short film Something Will Disappear for the Artists Climate Action Network. Ella was lucky enough to be a Soho Young Writer 2017/18 and one of the Bush Theatre’s Emerging Writers 2018/19. Ella is co-founder of Flux Theatre, which aims to support new voices in the arts. She also facilitates workshops and teaches playwriting for Synergy Theatre.

The Queer House in association with Bush Theatre (originally co-produced by HighTide) present

Pink Lemonade

By Mika Onyx Johnson

Directed by Emily Aboud

1 – 25 July

Press Night – 3 July at 7 pm

Post-Show Q&A – 8 July

Captioned performance – 9 July at 7.45 pm

Audio Described performance – 18 July at 2.45 pm

★★★★ “Life frequently gave them lemons but goddam Johnson’s got the juice” – The Stage 18 best shows of Edinburgh Fringe 2019

Falling in love was sweet like sugar until the taste turned bitter. Caught between Simmi who wants it bad but ain’t a lesbian, and Token Toni who loves a bitta bashment and only dates black and brown womxn – Mika can’t seem to catch a break.

Fresh from a smash-hit run at the Edinburgh Fringe, original beats collide with poetry, movement, and storytelling in Mika Onyx Johnson’s debut play – an exploration of sexuality, gender, and self-discovery.

Mika Onyx Johnson is an actor, writer and performance artist from Nottingham now based in London. Recent credits include; as an actor Cyrano de Bergerac (West End/ New York) and as a writer My White Best Friend (The Bunker). Pink Lemonade is Mika’s debut show. It previewed at the Gate Theatre and premiered at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2019 where it was included in The Stage 18 best shows of the Fringe. It is currently being developed for TV.

Emily Aboud is a Trinidadian theatre director and writer. Most recently Emily wrote and directed SPLINTERED (Edinburgh/VAULT). Other directing credits include Pink Lemonade (Gate Theatre/Edinburgh/HighTide); Exceptional Promise (Bush Theatre); Salty Irina (Ovalhouse) and What We Talk About When We (Don’t) Talk About Race (Theatre503). As an associate director, her work includes A Place for We (Park Theatre) and Parlour Games (Bridewell Theatre) and as assistant director Going Through (Bush Theatre); A Small Place (Gate Theatre) and Deposit (Hampstead).  Emily also performs as a drag king called TriniDad & TooGayThough.

The Queer House is an artists’ agency and producing house for queer actors, writers, and makers and is an associate company at the Gate Theatre.  Recent credits for its artists include The Nevers (HBO); January 22nd (BBC/HBO); Cyrano de Bergerac (West End); HANNA (Amazon Prime); I’ll Take You to Mrs Cole! (Complicité); Malory Towers (Wise Children); Them! (National Theatre Scotland); Pah-La (Royal Court); And The Rest of Me Floats (Bush Theatre); Cuckoo (Soho); Dear Elizabeth (Gate Theatre) and The Feed (Amazon Prime).  The Queer House debut double bill of shows premiered at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2019 as part of a co-production with HighTide where they were included in The Stage 18 best shows and The Guardian top picks of the Fringe.

SUMMER AT THE BUSH THEATRE

This summer, a bold and provocative programme of live podcasts and musicians will be taking over the Bush Theatre, followed by DJs playing till late on the terrace. The Bush will be home to several food pop ups, serving up delicious Nigerian, Caribbean and BBQ dishes.

The Bush Theatre will also be rolling out the green turf and screening the biggest sporting events of the summer, including the UEFA European Championships, Olympic Games, and Wimbledon. Enjoy a front row seat for your favourite matches and sample our new range of summer spritzers, including the West London Mule and Wimbledon Collins, brought to you in partnership with our local distillery, Sipsmith.

The Bush Theatre’s outdoor terrace is perfect for summertime drinks and watching the world of Shepherd’s Bush go by. It’s a heavenly sun trap and one of the only outdoor cafe bars in the area.

SUMMER SESSIONS

The Big Black Quiz

Friday 22 May, Script Library, 6pm-11.30pm

Think you know your Audre Lorde from your Toni Morrison? Or your BBK from your Roll Deep? Join Veepa for this educational yet thrilling quiz that will have you questioning how well you know your Black history. This will be a pub quiz like you’ve never seen before.

Mary and Friends Live w/ Rai the DJ

Friday 12 June, Attic, 6pm – 11.30pm

Mary and Friends returns to the Bush following a sold out event. Expect a panel discussion exploring the LGBT+ community, live performances and an after party provided by Rai the DJ.

Dykes And A Mic (DAAM) Podcast Live

Friday 3 July, Attic, 5pm – 11.30pm

In celebration of their one-year anniversary, the Dykes And A Mic podcast takes to the stage for their first live podcast event. This will be followed by an after-party on the Bush terrace with resident DJ, Rai the DJ.

Rai the DJ Day Party

Friday 15 August, Bush Terrace, 12pm – 11.30pm

Can’t wait until carnival? Come down to the Bush this August for great vibes, great music and great cocktails.

SUMMER FOOD POP UPS
Vegan Nigerian – Nigerian cuisine

14 June

Angry Black Kitchen – Nigerian cuisine

21 June, 26 July, 9 August

Original Flava – Caribbean cuisine

12 July
Brothers BBQ Brunches – Garage music brunch

28 June, 2 August, 16 August

 

SUMMER SCREENINGS

UEFA European Championships: 12th June – 12th July

12 June – Turkey v Italy

13 June – Wales v Switzerland, Denmark v Finland & Belgium v Russia

14 June – England v Croatia, Austria v play-off winner & Netherlands v Ukraine

15 June – Play-off winner v Czech Republic, Poland v play-off winner & Spain v Sweden

16 June – Play-off winner v Portugal & France v Germany

17 June – Finland v Russia, Turkey v Wales & Italy v Switzerland

18 June- Ukraine v Play-off winner, Denmark v Belgium & Netherlands v Austria

19 June – Sweden v Play-off winner, Croatia v Czech Republic & England v play-off winner

20 June – Play-off winner v France, Portugal v Germany & Spain v Poland

21 June – Italy v Wales & Switzerland v Turkey

22 June – Play-off winner v Netherlands, Ukraine v Austria & Finland v Belgium

23 June – Czech Republic v England, Croatia v play-off winner

24 June – Play-off winner B v Spain & Germany v play-off winner

27 June – 2A v 2B & 1A v 2C

28 June – 1C v 3D/E/F & 1B v 3A/D/E/F

29 June – 2D v 2E & 1F v 3A/B/C

30 June – 1D v 2F & 1E v 3A/B/C/D

3 July – Quarter Finals 1 & 2